The night is black like never before. From the roof of the Agency the entire sprawling city looks like a dark maelstrom that constantly changes form, like a maw of tar into which everything flows sluggishly like lava, like a black hole that sucks everything in, even the light of the stars.
White tosses his cigarette butt. Shortly afterward the embers vanish somewhere several stories below him. Burned up. Annihilated, just like the numerous test subjects of the last few weeks.
It is time to enter the lab. Already up for days, not having slept, not having eaten, only nourished by coffee and nicotine.
The elevator takes him below, deep down below the surface, into the heart of the building, where the mind-machine is waiting. Tired, White leaves the compartment. The Agency staff quickly avert their eyes, others flinch when they see him. And how should they react in any other way? He hasn’t looked at himself in a mirror for a long time. And he doesn’t want to see what is looking back at him. The only thing of importance now is that his heart keeps beating until he has found the access to the Dreamweb, that damned Dreamweb – and until he has destroyed everything that lies beyond.
The lab security personnel are carrying away another stretcher. The white sheet is quickly turning red where there had been a head before. How many had it already been this night?
White enters the frequency room. A man that he has never seen before is sitting on the mechanical chair. Naked, shaved head, sensor beads on his skin. He is still breathing. For how much longer? This time it has to work. But if not... the next test subjects are being prepped already in the air lock. They would be able to continue like this for weeks. But at some point someone would be asking questions.
„Attempt number two-hundred-eight“, White hears the voice of the mechanic say.
The cameras are recording. The contraption is humming along. The machine automatically inserts the tubes into the arteries of the man. The needles are piercing his skin, entering deep into his flesh. His eyes contort. Within the blink of an eye the icy cold blue liquid floods his body like an arctic shock. Cold vapor is billowing out of his mouth. His pupils are changing.
This horrific gaze!
White will never get used to it.
The mechanic is regulating the flux with the synchronizer. White thought that all of this should have been much easier. That night, when Black escaped, the Agency guys had caught the frequency with the detector. They had analyzed the sequence for days, but it was useless.
What good was a frequency that opens a door to the Dreamweb, if you didn’t know how to synchronize with it?